Thursday, September 14, 2023

Not a lot has changed in a year or so. The price of everything has skyrocketed to ridiculous levels. Gas is approaching Bush regime prices, rent keeps going up with no end in sight, and don't get me started on groceries... Fifteen dollars just for a pound of lunch meat!? I can buy a foot and a half long sub sandwich with all the fixin's from Jersey Mike's for that price! And someone else makes it for me - ready to eat!

People are calling it end-game capitalism; a few greedy corporations own everything, and they charge whatever they want because there are no competitors and people have no other choice. Every product on Kroger's shelves is produced by one of about five companies: Nestle, Sarah Lee, Procter and Gamble, Pfizer, and Unilever. All the different brand names,which are merely subsidiaries of the big five, just give us the illusion of choice and competition between businesses. Okay, there might be more than five, but not more than ten.

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Well, the world's going to hell in a handbasket (as usual). Putin is wreaking havok in the Ukraine mostly because nobody wants to risk staring WW3 by calling his bluff on how many operational nukes he has. He's using WW2 era tactics and mostly Korean war era tech to wage war. If the media is to be believed, he's killing civilians by the hundreds. He abandoned Chernobyl. What the hell does he even want? What is in Ukraine that's worth fighting for? Land? He obviously doesn't want people, nuclear fuel, or infrastructure.

My tinfoil hat theory is that Putin has been pulling the strings behind the curtain since before 9/11 to utterly destroy the world's economies so that he could run around unchecked with nobody left to stop him. What if Bin Laden was just a pawn on Putin's chessboard? We've already seen him manipulate our elections through Fakebook. Not that US citizens have any influence, the richest candidate always wins.

If voting made any difference, they wouldn't let us do it! - Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain)

I'm switching web hosts again. I'm sick of Namecheap's pain-in-the-ass SSL renewal. Every other web hosting site I've looked at does it automatically. That's what I get for going cheap. Dreamhost, here I come!

Saturday, April 16, 2022

I recently watched this video and I saved some of my favorite comments:

AzureinkVI: 1 month ago (edited) I'm 37 and I constantly consume kids shows and movies as much as I can. There are some excellent lessons in "children's" media of the last decade that I never got growing up, and resonate better than most of the "adult" media out there. I also prescribe to the 'the best children's stories are those mature enough to be for everyone'.

Revan: 3 days ago It's the "childrens" stories that teach us about hope, and acceptance, forgiveness, love, family, accepting ourselves and becoming who we're capable of being and never letting the world stand in our way. The 'childrens' stories teach us that hope is essential, that we have value, even when we've made mistakes, that we don't need money and wealth and power to be happy, and that deep down everyone has a little bit of good left in them. They teach us the danger of fear and hate and greed.

Far too much adult media is just cynical, black and white morality, teaching us to hate and destroy and be vengeful. Too often adult media teaches us that our mistakes defines us, that the past never dies and that our value and purpose comes only through the status we achieve, and that in the end we're all destines to be miserable, that at their heart, people are selfish, greedy and evil. I will take "childrens" media any day of the week.

My own comment: @Revan @AzureinkVI This commentary on the Kung Fu Panda trilogy and both of your comments sum up so much of why I like animated films! There are so many things in animation that aren't just for kids, not just the innuendos and in-jokes, but the themes, stories, character developments, and lessons to be learned that are hard to put into words, let alone teach!

Friday, December 31, 2021

Another dumpster fire of a year is over and there is no end in sight. Just when we see a faint indication of the end of the chaos, "Oh! Guess what we found! A new variant! You may panic like the stupid sheep you are now."

Part of me wants to believe the conspiracy theories that it is an experiment in government control, but I know that's just crazy talk... right? RIIIIGHT? It wouldn't surprise me one damn bit if it were true, but I subscribe to the notion of "Never assume malice when incompetence will suffice." I still believe that this whole thing is someone's science experiment gone horribly awry. Some dipshit in a lab was tinkering with the SARS virus and finally created something we can't kill. Move over MRSA!

People still aren't going back to work, but truthfully, I don't blame them. The government is still handing out free money like its growing on trees, and people are fed up with getting screwed over by big corporations full of lazy pen pushers sitting behind desks watching the money roll in while dictating to their underlings how to do a job they've never done themselves because they went straight from college into management and never had a clue.

Inflation has skyrocketed (Hmmm, I wonder why? It couldn't possibly be related to all the free money...) Gas prices are still relatively reasonalbe, I mean, its not the Bush regime's $4 a gallon (yet).

My workplace is FINALLY paying us what we are worth, partly because nobody in their right mind will settle for minimum wage when they can walk in any other door and get double that. Thirteen and a half years and I was still making less on the paycheck than I started my second job at - in 2001. I'm still making less than I was when I left that job, but I hated that job and no amount of money would have made up for how they treated me there. Big corporations "putting profits before people." Sam's Club treated their employees like shit, and their customers like thieves. I've never set foot in there since.

I've all but given up hope of it getting any better. This is just the shithole of a world we live in and it's our own damn fault that it ended up this way. It's plainly clear to me why God wants to destroy the Earth with fire, but I'm convinced we'll destroy ourselves first. Three great forces rule the world: stupidity, fear and greed. - Albert Einstein

Saturday May 22, 2021

It's been a hell of a year! Things are finally starting to resemble "normal"...

I've resumed full time at work, problem is, most of our former staff is gone - either fired, couldn't pass the newly implemented DOT physical, or just quit because they found another job. Still others are very likely sitting at home watching the free government hand-outs roll in. When I did my taxes, I found it disgusting that I made more money sitting on my ass this past year than I did busting my ass the previous years! Universal basic income is going to have a strong foothold once this chaos is over. Once everyone has $1,200 a month, guess what minimum rent is going to be? My rent is already close to 3 weeks pay!

Another sad truth is that we Americans have blamed the Chinese and the Mexicans for our lack of jobs for the past 30 years or more. Now that anyone can walk in any door and get a minimum of $15 an hour, nobody wants to work! Before the pandemic we were facing a shortage of people who actually knew how to do stuff: welders, plumbers, electricians, mechanics, machine shop workers... I think I know why. We place far too much value on prestigious jobs like doctors, lawyers and CEOs, while we turn our noses up at manual labor (That's peasant's work!) When I was in high school, the trade school was seen as being for the "stupid" kids who wouldn't graduate otherwise. It was a toxic stigma that follows us and is now haunting our economy!

Wake up people! You don't need a subscription to every streaming service. You don't need a $50,000 vehicle or a multi-million dollar house (mansion?). Greed has poisoned our minds! It is perfectly acceptable - and possible - to live a modest lifestyle and be happy.

Thursday November 19, 2020


Just over 10 years ago (April, 2010), a coworker gave me my cat, which I named Mira. She was estimated to be six or seven months old. At the time, she was unspayed with worms, so I suspect she was born a stray. She was a small black cat with beautiful yellow eyes, and she used to have a tiny patch of white on her lower belly. When she walked with her tail up, it often had this cute curl on the tip.

First Day

When she was young, she had this odd habbit of sitting at the foot of my chair and staring at me while I'm using my computer or watching TV. I thought she just wanted attention, though, she sometimes started to creep me out and I began to wonder if she was plotting my demise. She sometimes ended up lying on her back, with all four legs in the air, and just dozed off like that! She is the first cat I have seen in person to do this.

Legs Up Beautiful Eyes

I would often hear rustling or something hit the floor and I walk into the room, look at her and ask "What are you doin'?" I believe she thought that was her name. And of course, in classic cat fashion, she sat up, wrapped her tail around her paws looked at me and meowed as if to say "I wasn't doing anything."

Her favorite things in the whole world were my laser pointer, a string I tied to an old spoon, any cardboard box she could fit into (I was sometimes surprised what she could fit into!), and a warm patch of sun on the floor. She absolutely HATED car rides, and the vet. She would use the carrier as a litter box just because she was mad at me.

Cardboard Box

Once I had her spayed and dewormed, she blew up like a blimp! She reached 14 pounds. Poor girl was shut up in my small apartment with nothing to do but eat, sleep and look out the window. I often felt sorry for her because I had a full time job that left her alone 10 hours a day, 5 days a week. But she was given to me with the stipulation that if I didn't take her, the shelter would euthanize her. What choice did I have? After I moved to another apartment, things started going downhill. My current apartment is basically cat hell; the noisy neighbors, barking dogs, and the random fire alarm which has a hair trigger (dinner's ready!). She started chewing down her belly hair. Eventually she had a bare belly. She started sleeping in odd places. I'd often find her in the closet across from the bathroom. Sometimes she'd be in the bathroom cabinet. Otherwise, she was healthy, and this went on for a year or two. I didn't think much of it...

I don't know how it happened. Something brought in by new neighbors? New pets with fleas? She's furioulsly scratching to the point of drawing blood. Our illustrious government leaders have all but declared martial law and everything is mostly shut down - including vets. She went from 14 pounds back down to less than she weighed when I first got her in under a month. She lost all her appetite, but was still drinking water. Fleas do this? Nah, I put Frontline on her every month since I first saw the fleas. Diabetes? The dreaded Feline Leukemia? Not all the symptoms match. She had also started really hiding when she slept. I'm really worried at this point. I check on her, try to find her new hiding place. She's so frail. The vets are now open with very limited capacity. I plan on taking her to the vet my next day off work. I come home from work late Wednesday night she's still okay, just okay. I start to go to bet about 2:30am. I find her in the corner of a closet, as I pet her she looks up at me and meows feebily. Poor thing, I'll get you to the vet soon.

I wake up on Thursday morning about 7:30am to go to the bathroom. I wonder how she's doing? I look in the corner of the closet where she was before, she's not there. The other closet, the cabinet... I find her laying in a cardboard box turned on its side. She's not laying in her usual way. I reach down and pet her. She's cold. Limp. Gone. I pick her up and she just hangs limp. It took almost 10 minutes for it to sink in that she died while I was asleep. She died in her favorite place in the whole world - a cardboard box.

My worst fear was that I would come home from work one night and find her dead in some dark corner. God has blessed me that I got to see her one last time and she didn't die alone in an empty apartment.

Saturday, October 31, 2020

Updated my website to be compatible with mobile devices. This has been at the bottom of my to-do list for quite a while. It finally looks good on my phone!

Saturday April 18, 2020

Well, the world's gone to Hell in a handbasket. Everybody was expecting a zombie apocolypse and ended up getting a nasty version of pneumonia. And just when you think you have seen the peak of human stupidity, they double down and go all out. Hoarders snapping up toilet paper of all things (seriously?), and masks (proven not to do any good), and our illustrious president has been revealed to be the fraud I always knew he was. And due to his self-righteous ineptitude, most of his supporters (60+ with pre-existing health conditions) are dying by the thousands. He doesn't give a damn about America, he just wants to make himself great.

Enough ranting, I have finally updated my Lego section to include the Millenium Falcon pictures and some quick, unedited pictures of my collection. (zoom out to 50%, those pics are huge!)

Saturday, January 4, 2020

Finally got fed up with the shenanigans from my free web host and shelled out some cash to get stable hosting that won't get shut down just because I link to it on Reddit and "violate their terms of service" for some mysterious reason (most likely exceeding alotted bandwidth.)

Deep Subjects

Christian Wisdom from Star Wars

Yoda said Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter! Indeed our inner beings, our souls are luminous, if we are on the path to rightousness. We are to be a beacon of light to those who are of the world. We are in the world, but must be careful to not become of it.

Luke Skywalker: I don't believe it!

Yoda: That is why you fail.

Yoda said that anger, fear and hatred lead to the dark side of the force. In Christianity, these same things lead down the path to sin and death. He also warns about the dangers of emotions. While in reality, we are not restricted from certain emotions like the Jedi are, these emotions can get in the way of following God's teachings and rational decision making.

Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose. - Yoda

Anakin Skywalker's mother said you can avoid change no more than you can stop the sun from setting.


I was watching an episode of Star Trek: Voyager and God spoke to me. The episode explored some of the theories of evolution. The crew had encountered a race of humanoid reptiles called "Saurians" and a scientist of this race was proclaiming that he had found evidence that their origins were on Earth. But the Saurian government refused to let him keep studying and telling about his findings on the basis that it went against their doctrine. (How many times has that happened in our own history?) He went on to say that the Saurians and Humans aboard Voyager shared forty-some genetic markers.

This is what the Lord has so eloquently said to me: When I watch those genetic scientists studying DNA in an effort to support their theory of evolution, I see people studying the pigments in an effort to understand what the painting means. I personally have believed that DNA, while it does serve as a building block for all life, also serves as a signature; all of the artists I know of sign their work.

Free Will or All-Knowing God? I say both

Lots of people ask the question If God knows what I'm going to do before I do it, then is free will a lie? Is every choice we make predetermined? These people put God in too small of a box. They believe that if they can't see past their next choice, then how can God? Free will is not a lie. We are free to choose what we want to do. God does not need to know which choice we make because he knows every possible outcome of any choice we make. That is the definition of omnicience - unlimited knowledge. If we are faced with a decision with two possible choices, God knows the outcomes of both choices. This renders the actual choice we make largely irrelevant to God. We just have to deal with the consequences of the choice we do make.

Hard lessons learned

...cutting the number of hours in the work week and training people to be individually able to do more than one job... - excerpt from an email sent to me by a past acquaintance.

That's one of the reasons the economy collapsed! Why hire 3 people when we can overwork one until he has a nervous breakdown? Now we have 2 people out of work and one going to be on disability by the end of the year.

The reason people want 40 hour work weeks is because living expenses keep rising faster than wages. People want 40 hour work weeks because they are buried in debt from going to college, putting groceries on the credit card, and most of their paycheck goes to rent, mortgage, child daycare, etc. The school loans go on the back burner and only get minimum payments while the interest keeps accumulating, gas prices certainly aren't coming down anytime soon, and the boss just implemented a wage freeze because the company took a loss for the third year in a row.

It's well known that free time is precious to most people. However, some people are not fortunate enough to know that such a concept even exists, because they are working two jobs just to keep a roof over their families' heads and food on their tables.

A lot of good that college degree did them. They bought into the hype that the college degree would be their ticket to a nice career and the degree would pay for itself many times over. As if... What the hype didn't tell them is that college degrees are now a dime a dozen and employers now enjoy a buyer's market when hiring employees because they get 10 resumes a day from college grads looking for jobs.

I often thank the Good Lord that I am not part of this group. I am fortunate not to have college loans still looming over me 10 years later. I am fortunate that I don't have a family to feed other than my cat (she doesn't eat much). I am fortunate that a single job is enough to make my ends meet, although I have moved to a cheaper apartment. My rent was ridiculous for a one bedroom apartment, especially when I could have a three bedroom right down the street for the same price!

I've gotten married, bought a house, realized over the course of three years that we should never have gotten married, divorced, quickly realized I should never have bought the house, foreclosed on the house and have lived alone in an apartment ever since. I foreclosed on the house because of two reasons: loan payment was beyond my pay grade and the water heater blew up and flooded the house. I was faced with a decision: fix the water heater or make the next house payment. I decided neither, since the house payment was 80-90% of my monthly income. Yes, I am part of the foreclosure statistics.

I used to think that poor people simply didn't know how to manage money, or they dropped out of high school, were addicted to drugs and therefore could not get or keep a job, etc. In short, I used to think that poor people became poor because of poor choices they made in life. Often this is true, but just as often, there are things that happen in peoples' lives that they have no control over. Sometimes, no matter how hard he tries, there are some things a man can't succeed at, because the forces around him are stronger than he is. - Steven Brust

Having been through what I have, I am now much more sympathetic toward these people. Witnessing and experiencing for myself the effects of the crumbling economy have taught me things I might never have fully understood otherwise. The idiom "Don't judge somebody until you have walked a mile in their shoes" comes to mind...

My thoughts on the movie "Hunger Games"

I watched Hunger Games on Netflix and I thought it had an interesting story, but a disappointing plot. I had seen similar motifs in other movies, especially this one I don't remember the title of where a village drew lots every year to see who gets stoned to death by their peers.I spent most of the movie rooting for the downtrodden people who had to give up their children to rise up and revolt and overthrow the government. This is some person's idea of what the Roman Colosseum would be like in the distant future. I was appalled by the disparity between the haves and have nots in that society. The government and the upper class live at the height of technological achievement with every creature comfort one could ask for, while the people who do the labor that keeps them alive and comfortable live in filth and poverty. What really disgusts me is that we are actually most of the way there right now.

There are doctors, lawyers, bankers and politicians that sit and watch Jerry Springer, Big Brother, Survivor and Jersey Shore for entertainment. It is very likely that little, if any, of the scenes on these shows are actually real. They probably sit and think "Aren't you glad we don't have to live like that anymore?" What they don't realize is that there are people in this world that live like that every day of their lives. It disgusts me that the lives of people deemed of a lesser walk of life are put on display for the amusement of those who have no clue how fortunate they are that they may never have to experience such hardships. They feel that they are somehow entitled to the riches that they take for granted. I personally believe that it is a miracle that we have not already sunken to the depths of depravity that are depicted in this movie.

Did we learn nothing from Colombine?

When the Sandy Hook massacre happened on Friday, December 14, 2012, it had a lasting effect on me. At least with Colombine, there was a reasonably clear motive. What could drive a person to kill kindergarteners? How many more copy-cat massacres is it going to take before a real effort is spent trying to address mental health issues before these nutcases snap and go on rampages? And then there's the ignorant anti-gun people; the guy didn't even own a single gun that was used. People are going to aquire guns no matter how tight the laws are. Further restricting guns is not going to solve anything, in fact, it could serve to make the problem worse. You might as well try to fix a flat tire by tightening the lugnuts. How about addressing the source of the problem - detecting the tell-tale signs of crazy shooting rampages before they go critical?

I suppose my friend Joe was right when he said that it was not possible to apply logic to a problem that defies logic. This act of senseless violence was just that: senseless. My thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of those children and faculty members.

Apparently, we have learned nothing in a very long time:
List of school shootings in the United States